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Poll
Question: How often do you actively participate in spiritual or religious activities, including but not limited to praying, giving offering, performing rituals, etc.?
Every day
Once or twice a week
A couple times a month
A few times a year
Hardly ever
Never
Other

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Author Topic: Level of Active Religious/Spiritual Participation  (Read 12913 times)
Waldfrau
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« Reply #30: May 26, 2008, 02:24:42 am »

At the moment, I am just trying to learning some very basic moves from a DVD. What I hope to do is to start going to the local Buddhist temple in my area when I have a little more time. They offer classes every Sat, the only problem is that even though the temple is in my area it is still a 30 to 45 min drive. I live in a big city with lots of bad traffic.
The problem is that even if you're a talented person who copies very quickly you might not be able to self-correct specific habits you have.

I'll try to explain: Every person has a specific structure of tension and relaxation in the body. What I mean is not a structure you have inhabited (geneticly), but what you're body memory has saved while doing dayly work. For example someone who works in an office will have different habits of standing, walking, moving arms etc. as someone who lifts heavy objects in her/his work. An introvert will have different habits of moving than an extrovert etc.

These things are hard to see at yourself because you're so used to them and you don't know where to look for a blockage, you need experience for that. If a movement doesn't work the way it should you'll have to tell if the problem is in the ellbow, in the shoulder or somewhere else. I'm teaching Tai Chi since over a year now and I sometimes have trouble to see where a student is cramping exactly.

For me this corrective work (making your body transparent for movements and postures different from your allday habit) is the main work of Tai Chi, because for me that's what you learn: to know your own body and work with it. All the fancy movements are ways to get there.

I might be biased though, I've learned Tai Chi a specific way and I teach it a specific way.

In your situation I'd go to the temple every other week and when I don't have the time to go I'd exercise the movements I've learned there so far so they can correct them next time and teach me something new. 

Wish you a lot of fun! Just don't give up on learning! Smiley
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rose
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« Reply #31: May 26, 2008, 11:07:00 am »

These things are hard to see at yourself because you're so used to them and you don't know where to look for a blockage, you need experience for that. If a movement doesn't work the way it should you'll have to tell if the problem is in the ellbow, in the shoulder or somewhere else. I'm teaching Tai Chi since over a year now and I sometimes have trouble to see where a student is cramping exactly.

I would say that these things are nearly impossible to see for yourself, and not safe to try and learn without an experienced teacher to show you the proper alignment. At best, you're quite likely to teach yourself wrong, and at worst you could hurt yourself.
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Goddess grant me:
  The power of Water,
  to accept with ease & grace what I cannot change.

  The power of Fire,
  for the energy & courage to change the things I can.

  The power of Air,
  for the ability and wisdom to know the difference.

  And the power of Earth,
  for the strength to continue my path.

http://rosejayadal.blogspot.com/
Waldfrau
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« Reply #32: May 26, 2008, 03:45:43 pm »

At best, you're quite likely to teach yourself wrong, and at worst you could hurt yourself.
Unless you handle weapons it's not that likely to hurt yourself, but it will be very frustrating if you go to a teacher after a time of self-teaching and then he/she makes you start at the basics and you need longer to learn than anyone else who has just freshly started with the whole thing because they haven't taught themselves wrong stuff beforehand. (Btw, also people who have learned balet beforehand have quite interesting irritations about Tai Chi, but they come around after some weeks. I have to be very pedantic with them though, not always funny for them.)

Still here, Figment? I hope we didn't scare you away. It's really a rewarding art, but you need to invest a lot of patience and steady practice like if you'd learn the piano, you can't expect to give a grande concert in your first year of training.
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rose
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« Reply #33: May 26, 2008, 04:17:18 pm »

I hope we didn't scare you away.

me too! And I will also note that in fact the only times I've ever hurt myself doing yoga were in class-I"m extremely cautious when I'm by myself, even though I've been practicing off and on since I was a kid.
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Goddess grant me:
  The power of Water,
  to accept with ease & grace what I cannot change.

  The power of Fire,
  for the energy & courage to change the things I can.

  The power of Air,
  for the ability and wisdom to know the difference.

  And the power of Earth,
  for the strength to continue my path.

http://rosejayadal.blogspot.com/
Figment99
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« Reply #34: May 26, 2008, 11:14:36 pm »

Still here, Figment? I hope we didn't scare you away.
I'm still here, no worries. It has just been a busy weekend..it was my husband's and mine anniversary  Grin
You didn't scare me either. You both have some very good points. I know I should find a teacher, I think I will check some of the gyms in my area, some might offer a class. I am also fairly cautious. I have also been doing yoga since I was young, but a few years ago I hurt my back while I was in the military and really couldn't do much for about 2 and half years. Then I got pregnant and the doctors really didn't want me to do anything with my back. Now I am mostly back to normal, but I still have to be careful not to do what I did before...I don't think I could stand being a lay-about for another 2 years.
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Waldfrau
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« Reply #35: May 27, 2008, 03:04:47 am »

me too! And I will also note that in fact the only times I've ever hurt myself doing yoga were in class-I"m extremely cautious when I'm by myself, even though I've been practicing off and on since I was a kid.
Now I get were you were coming from with the 'hurt yourself' bit. It's the streching, isn't it? In Tai Chi the dangers are at handling weapons and partner exercises. So if you just practice Yang style alone without that stuff accidents are unlikely. You could damage your knee though if you practice wrongly for a longer period, that's a very likely danger.
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rose
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« Reply #36: May 27, 2008, 11:02:46 pm »

Now I get were you were coming from with the 'hurt yourself' bit. It's the streching, isn't it? In Tai Chi the dangers are at handling weapons and partner exercises. So if you just practice Yang style alone without that stuff accidents are unlikely. You could damage your knee though if you practice wrongly for a longer period, that's a very likely danger.

I pulled my hamstring pretty good a couple of years ago doing standing splits. The person next to me heard it Shocked

Yes, there is a big difference b/w yoga and Tai Chi, especially as an individual practice. My mom hurt her knees doing tai chi at home, but she was in her 50s at the time and not in terrific shape to begin with.
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Goddess grant me:
  The power of Water,
  to accept with ease & grace what I cannot change.

  The power of Fire,
  for the energy & courage to change the things I can.

  The power of Air,
  for the ability and wisdom to know the difference.

  And the power of Earth,
  for the strength to continue my path.

http://rosejayadal.blogspot.com/
Waldfrau
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« Reply #37: May 28, 2008, 02:01:56 am »

I pulled my hamstring pretty good a couple of years ago doing standing splits. The person next to me heard it Shocked

Yes, there is a big difference b/w yoga and Tai Chi, especially as an individual practice. My mom hurt her knees doing tai chi at home, but she was in her 50s at the time and not in terrific shape to begin with.
Bound to happen if you practice it a longer period with an S-shaped spine. I know it's hard not to as people run around with S-shape all the time, but in Yang-style the back is supposed to be completly straight (like if you would have swallowed a stick).
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rose
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« Reply #38: May 29, 2008, 12:31:54 am »

Bound to happen if you practice it a longer period with an S-shaped spine. I know it's hard not to as people run around with S-shape all the time, but in Yang-style the back is supposed to be completly straight (like if you would have swallowed a stick).

I do have an S-shaped spine, I have to work on keeping it straight all the time. Curse of Big Boobs Tongue
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Goddess grant me:
  The power of Water,
  to accept with ease & grace what I cannot change.

  The power of Fire,
  for the energy & courage to change the things I can.

  The power of Air,
  for the ability and wisdom to know the difference.

  And the power of Earth,
  for the strength to continue my path.

http://rosejayadal.blogspot.com/
Vyktor
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« Reply #39: June 12, 2008, 07:38:27 pm »

This question came about as a result of a conversation I had recently with a theology student who asked this of me.  He wondered how much other pagans actively engage in religious/spiritual activities.  Of course, that got me wondering about this as well.  Explanations are, as always, are encouraged and welcomed.



Everyday. I talk to the Gods everyday - I guess you could say its prayer.

More ritualistic prayer I do as I feel is needed. More so in the fall, winter and spring as my ritual involves a small out door fire and with living in a rural forested area we get fire bans in the summer. Still working on a way around that.

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Aisling
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« Reply #40: June 12, 2008, 09:51:19 pm »

More so in the fall, winter and spring as my ritual involves a small out door fire and with living in a rural forested area we get fire bans in the summer. Still working on a way around that.

If you figure out a way around that, let me know!  We've been under burning bans because of drought here.  My Samhain fire last year consisted of several small candles in placed in my fire bowl. It just isn't quite the same. Sad
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Vyktor
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« Reply #41: June 12, 2008, 10:08:30 pm »

If you figure out a way around that, let me know!  We've been under burning bans because of drought here.  My Samhain fire last year consisted of several small candles in placed in my fire bowl. It just isn't quite the same. Sad

I may just use a little round hibatchi beach bbq thing to hold a little wood in. Could try that.
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Aisling
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« Reply #42: June 13, 2008, 08:46:51 am »

I may just use a little round hibatchi beach bbq thing to hold a little wood in. Could try that.

Unfortunately, any whiff of wood smoke would have my neighbor reporting me for illegal burning.  I live next to an 87-year-old tattle tale. Roll Eyes
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